Jeff Flake & Carlos Curbelo vs. Ben Domenech & Kimberley Strassel

Taping Thursday, February 11th / Releasing Friday, February 26

What should the Republican party look like after Donald Trump? For many prominent establishment figures, the only way back is to purge the forces that brought Trump to power. But others warn that rejecting the millions of voters who supported the former president is the wrong call for the American right. On Thursday, February 11, nonpartisan debate series Intelligence Squared U.S. tapes a live debate on the motion “The GOP Has Lost Its Way” with four prominent Conservatives squaring off.

Arguing in favor of the motion are former Arizona Senator Jeff Flake and former Florida Congressman Carlos Curbelo. Arguing against the motion are Wall Street Journal editorial board member Kimberley Ann Strasseland The Federalist co-founder Ben Domenech. Audience vote will determine the winner, based on which side’s numbers improve the most between pre- and post-debate votes.

The debate will tape at 4:00 PM ET on Thursday, February 11, before airing on public radio and the Intelligence Squared U.S. podcast on Friday, February 26. Media can email [email protected] for press access to the live taping (all content embargoed until 10:00 AM ET on February, February 26, when the debate airs publicly).


* Jeff Flake: Fmr. U.S. Senator, Arizona
The Honorable Jeff Flake is the former senator from Arizona, serving from 2013 to 2019. Before that, he served six terms in the House of Representatives representing Arizona’s 6th Congressional District. He is also the author of the 2017 New York Times best-seller “Conscience of a Conservative: A Rejection of Destructive Politics and a Return to Principle.” He is also currently a contributor to CNN, a guest lecturer at Princeton, and a guest speaker at Yale.

* Carlos Curbelo: Former U.S. Congressman
Former U.S. Congressman Carlos Luis Curbelo served Florida’s 26th congressional district from 2015 to 2019. While there, he served on the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, the Education and Workforce Committee, the Small Business Committee, the Committee on Ways and Means, and co-founded the bipartisan House Climate Solutions Caucus. Prior to serving in Congress, Curbelo worked at the Miami-Dade Metropolitan Planning Organization and Miami Dade County School Board. He further founded a media and public relations firm, which he managed for more than 10 years. Born in Miami, Florida, his parents were political refugees who fled Cuba.


* Ben Domenech: Co-founder and Publisher of The Federalist
Benjamin Domenech is the publisher of The Federalist, host of The Federalist Radio Hour, and writes The Transom, a daily subscription newsletter for political insiders. Domenech also serves as a fellow at the Manhattan Institute. He was previously a senior fellow at the Heartland Institute; editor-in-chief of The City, an academic journal on faith and culture; and a speechwriter for HHS Secretary Tommy Thompson and U.S. Senator John Cornyn of Texas. He co-founded Redstate and co-hosted Coffee & Markets, an award-winning economic podcast. His writing has been published in the Daily Beast, Politico, Commentary, Reason, and GQ, and he appears regularly on Fox News, MSNBC, CNN, HBO, and CBS’s Face the Nation.

* Kimberley Ann Strassel, Author and Member of the Wall Street Journal editorial board
Kimberley A. Strassel is an author and member of the editorial board for The Wall Street Journal. She also writes a weekly Potomac Watch political column, and is a regular contributor to Sunday political shows, including CBS’s “Face the Nation,” Fox News Sunday, and NBC’s “Meet the Press.” She is the author of “The Intimidation Game: How the Left Is Silencing Free Speech,” “Leaving Women Behind: Modern Families, Outdated Laws”; and “Resistance (At All Costs): How Trump Haters are Breaking America.”

A non-partisan, non-profit organization, Intelligence Squared U.S. was founded to address a fundamental problem in America: the extreme polarization of our nation and our politics. Their mission is to restore critical thinking, facts, reason, and civility to American public discourse. The award-winning debate series reaches millions of viewers and listeners through multi-platform distribution, including public radio, podcasts, live streaming, newsletters, interactive digital content, and on-demand apps including Roku and Apple TV. With over 180 debates and counting, Intelligence Squared U.S. has encouraged the public to “think twice” on a wide range of provocative topics. Author and ABC News correspondent John Donvan has moderated IQ2US since 2008.

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